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Thread: The mixed genetic origin of the first farmers of Europe

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    this is a paper in Russian about the eastern SS culture around the Don

    Sredniy Stog culture of the Don forest-steppe: data of radiocarbon dating
    A. Skorobogatov, R. Smolyaninov


    This work is devoted to the generalization of the data of radiocarbon dating of complexes of the Sredniy Stog culture in
    the territory of the Don forest-steppe. The available materials indicate the presence of two stages in the development
    of the Sredniy Stog culture in this territory, which generally existed from the beginning of the second quarter of the
    5th millennium BC until the end of the 4th millennium BC.

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    Quote Originally Posted by etrusco View Post
    http://www.archeo.ru/izdaniya-1/vagn...020-2013-123-s


    These are a series of interesting papers about Russian archeological cultures. Among them I find particularly interesting this about the Volga_Ural region. It seems that Khvalynsk is a bit younger than previously thought. It seems younger than Sredni Stog I . That tilts the balance pretty much in favor of SS being the PIE. So likely is Khvalynsk that is from SS ( first phase ) rather than the other way round. So as I predicted Yamnaya is just SS absorbing and assimilating people from further east. On Eurogenes Vladimir posted this :


    In addition to the numerous dates of the Upper don, there are two dates for SSC ceramics from the Cherkasskaya-3 site on the Middle don: 4240-3811 Salbc (2σ), 4760-4345 Salbc (2σ).” The situation about SSC population migration is also clear: Pontic steppe-middle don - upper don-Belarus

    If confirmed it is an hint to how Corded Ware came to be.



    Chronology of the Khvalynsk culture of the Volga-Ural region
    P. Kuznetsov
    The paper examines the position of the Khvalynsk culture in the system of chronology of the Volga-Ural region
    cultures. The chronological gap with the Yamnaya culture of the initial stage of the Bronze Age has been reduced.
    Important reminder here is that the Sredny Stog culture had two distinct phases, and it's particulsrly the Sredny Stog phase II that is a material culture you'd associate with and recognize as PIE.

    But despite the logical assumption that PIE originated in the SS cultural zone, we have to remember that a key feature of IE culture was not present there, the burial mounds that is so we obvioudly do not have a one way street when it comes to cultural input from the local EHG descendent steppe herders. SS mostly had flat burials, the type you see amongst several CWC populations.

    Not sure if I'd agree with Khvalynsk just originating from SS phase 1. They clearly would've had contact and there would've been quite some agropastoral influence from west to east, but Khvalynsk had pretty distinct Y-dna lineages that I think are more likely to be from local EHGs of that region, such as the Samara culture.
    Last edited by CopperAxe; 11-28-2020 at 10:14 AM.

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  5. #173
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    Quote Originally Posted by CopperAxe View Post
    Important reminder here is that the Sredny Stog culture had two distinct phases, and it's particulsrly the Sredny Stog phase II that is a material culture you'd associate with and recognize as PIE.

    But despite the logical assumption that PIE originated in the SS cultural zone, we have to remember that a key feature of IE culture was not present there, the burial mounds that is so we obvioudly do not have a one way street when it comes to cultural input from the local EHG descendent steppe herders. SS mostly had flat burials, the type you see amongst several CWC populations.

    Not sure if I'd agree with Khvalynsk just originating from SS phase 1. They clearly would've had contact and there would've been quite some agropastoral influence from west to east, but Khvalynsk had pretty distinct Y-dna lineages that I think are more likely to be from local EHGs of that region, such as the Samara culture.

    I think you both raised the question and provided the answer: if CWC that we know for sure was 100% IE speaking had flat burials like SS that means that there is no substantial connection between kurgans and PIE. Building kurgans it is a universal thing in different culture around the world to begin with. They were fashionable among the IE in a particular stage of their history. But that does not mean no kurgans no PIE.

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    So, we have a highly divergent branch of Afro-Asiatic, Omotic, in East-Africa. This reminds me of the position of Hittite in the IE family. Some people have argued that this kind of a situation proves that a language family orignated where the oldest split is, i.e. the origin of IE languages is in Anatolia. By the way, this train of thought is usually also applied to yDNA haplogroups.

    A less extreme position would be that the earliest split indicates the approximate area of a protolanguage, and this would allow the IE home area to be extended to Ukraine, and Afro-Asiatic home to be located in the Nile Valley.

    A third position would be completely different: differentiation is not only a steady result of a distance in time but it can be due to a strong substrate influence. In this model, the most divergent language needs not be the oldest, it can even be the youngest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CopperAxe View Post
    Important reminder here is that the Sredny Stog culture had two distinct phases, and it's particulsrly the Sredny Stog phase II that is a material culture you'd associate with and recognize as PIE.

    But despite the logical assumption that PIE originated in the SS cultural zone, we have to remember that a key feature of IE culture was not present there, the burial mounds that is so we obvioudly do not have a one way street when it comes to cultural input from the local EHG descendent steppe herders. SS mostly had flat burials, the type you see amongst several CWC populations.

    Not sure if I'd agree with Khvalynsk just originating from SS phase 1. They clearly would've had contact and there would've been quite some agropastoral influence from west to east, but Khvalynsk had pretty distinct Y-dna lineages that I think are more likely to be from local EHGs of that region, such as the Samara culture.
    https://www.academia.edu/35556491/Th..._to_Eneolithic

    From the abstract.

    This article is devoted to cultural contacts of steppe population and Balkan people about 5300–4800 BC. Numerous imports (adornments from copper, cornelian, marine shells, pots, plates from the bone and nacre, pendants from the teeth of red deer), radical changes in the cultural traditions (new type ornamental compositions, flexed inhumations, stone in graves and above them, pits with alcove) and imitation of pottery have been fxed for the Late Neolithic in the Eastern European steppe. Acquaintance with first metal and strong western impact caused the formation of the new Sredniy Stog culture.

    it could be that in SS the kurgans were just a distant riverberation of EEF ideas along with the quintessential EEF practice of the crouched burial ( later seen in BBC and CWC)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xeon View Post
    Isn't the general consensus that R1 spread with the indo european expansion from the pontic-caspian steppe? What does Q have anything to do with the indo european expansion?

    Proto indo europeans themselves were overwhelmingly europid no?
    Q didn't expand the same way as R1. But it was probably still present among PIE speakers.

    What does being europid have to do with anything? The samples that belong to Q were not very different autosomal from the R1 samples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michalis Moriopoulos View Post
    Well, yeah, the issue for me isn't whether Omotics have West Eurasian ancestry; they do. The question is whether it was already there before Cushitics arrived on the scene or if Omotics owe the entirety of their WE ancestry to gene flow from Cushitic speakers. The "purer" example of the Ari is probably the one to focus on because the Wolayta do have known gene flow from their neighbors according to posters here.
    The clearly West-Basal Eurasian part in the Ari is probably cut in half in comparison to the Wolayta, but its still very significant and what I found particularly significant is that how their genetic profile (all Omotic speakers available) compare to Nilo-Saharan groups like the Gumuz und Mursi. If you compare those two, you immediately see how the whole ancestry being re-arranged, in one case around a West-Basal Eurasian ancestral core (AA), in the other around Nilotic ancestry (NS). Another issue is how small some of the other Omotic groups are, which means they could have been particularly prone to drift and while admixture from Kushites for Wolayta is true, the same applies for Ari in the other direction. I meam how long did they supposedly live in the region?
    The real issue here is if that would be the sole legitimate argument in favour of a more Southern PAA origin, its an argument on weak grounds.

    I would think this could be solved with uniparental information, but maybe it's too messy to say. If the Ari have lot of Savannah Pastoral Neolithic-asssociated or post-SPN Cushitic-specific E subclades, that would be nice to know. But if their subclades are older and can conceivably be tied to a Proto-AA migration, that would be very interesting indeed.
    Before doing my crude model I though so too, but did found anything pre-prepared for that purpose or easy to grab. I wouldn't focus on the Ari exclusively though, because then again, they are just one group, a fairly small and drift-susceptible one. In the search of such paternal lineages, different Omotic speaking groups should be compared with each other and other ethnolinguistic units.

    Agamemnon has stated that Proto-AA is pre-agricultural; it split up when its speakers were still foragers. Let's assume that Proto-AAs were Natufian-like and lived in Egypt ~13,000 years ago, perhaps as part of the Sebilian culture. We know nearby in Lower Nubia there were some very unusual-looking people living in Jebel Sahaba as part of the Qadan culture. Don't have their DNA yet, but these might have been AEA. Of course, we might get some kind of surprise and find out Jebel Sahaba was ANA or something really unusual that didn't survive into later periods, but I'm just assuming AEA for speculation's sake. Now let's say the Proto-Omotic branch splits off the trunk and heads south shortly thereafter, mixing with AEA people (not necessarily Qadan people proper) somewhere in Sudan. This creates the first hybrid AEA-Natufian hybrid group. Thousands of years later, Cushitics form under similar circumstances. Maybe Omotics sojourned in Sudan for a long time and were only pushed to the Omo Valley during the Savannah Pastoral Neolithic thanks to pressure from Cushitic migration, only acquiring Mota-like ancestry once they got there. I don't know if this theory is archaeologically sound, but I was thinking about what you've said before about chain reaction migrations. I'm not sure we need to even assume Omotic has been in Ethiopia for 10,000+ years. But it does need to be explained, as its membership in Afro-Asiatic is canonical according to our resident expert.
    That was my main point, regardless of whether we see Egypt-Sudan (Nile region) and/or the Levante-Southern Arabia (Near East) as the origin of the Natufian-like people which I would associate with PAA: No matter which of these homeland theories is true, a homeland theory South of it is unlikely to be true. And PAA is just not very likely to have been living in Ethiopia. So your model is, basically, exactly what I proposed for the origin of Omotic speakers.

    There is only one pathway for a more Southern origin, and that is a route on which more Southern shifted populations expanded North and spread E1b1b with themselves, on top of a more Basal Eurasian-West Eurasian of the Nile region, and expanded then, from this base, both to North West Africa and the Levante (Natufian). I don't think that is the case, but the only way to really prove the point is to find the deeper origins of E1b1b and to estimate, with actual aDNA samples, the contribution of each ancient component to Natufians.

    Quote Originally Posted by etrusco View Post
    http://www.archeo.ru/izdaniya-1/vagn...020-2013-123-s


    These are a series of interesting papers about Russian archeological cultures. Among them I find particularly interesting this about the Volga_Ural region. It seems that Khvalynsk is a bit younger than previously thought. It seems younger than Sredni Stog I . That tilts the balance pretty much in favor of SS being the PIE. So likely is Khvalynsk that is from SS ( first phase ) rather than the other way round. So as I predicted Yamnaya is just SS absorbing and assimilating people from further east. On Eurogenes Vladimir posted this
    That's known for quite some time now, Khvalynsk was just an early offshot, they assimilated local groups, but didn't evolved on too much and were subsequently assimilated by the next wave from the Lower Don, which created Repin/Yamnaya. Khvalynsk was just an early branching event which resulted in a dead end. If you read hte papers of Nadezhda Kotova and other archaeologists from the region, that was known for quite some time. Wasn't it just Anthony which gave them too much importance? The problem of the early research was they did recognise mobility, unlike the ideological immobilists, but once the new people settled down, they proceeded with the "immobility paradigma", like if after the introduction of first herding and more mobile lifestyles things were settled. They were not, and the dynamic centre of the steppe people was for a long time in the Lower Don region, from which it spread in the first place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kristiina View Post
    A third position would be completely different: differentiation is not only a steady result of a distance in time but it can be due to a strong substrate influence. In this model, the most divergent language needs not be the oldest, it can even be the youngest.
    To name it its substrate effect and the effect of a highly divergent substrate is the most important factor for any large scale linguistic change. Considering everything we know about the Omo people and their ancestry, they were effected by the substrate big time.

    Quote Originally Posted by etrusco View Post
    https://www.academia.edu/35556491/Th..._to_Eneolithic

    From the abstract.

    This article is devoted to cultural contacts of steppe population and Balkan people about 53004800 BC. Numerous imports (adornments from copper, cornelian, marine shells, pots, plates from the bone and nacre, pendants from the teeth of red deer), radical changes in the cultural traditions (new type ornamental compositions, flexed inhumations, stone in graves and above them, pits with alcove) and imitation of pottery have been fxed for the Late Neolithic in the Eastern European steppe. Acquaintance with first metal and strong western impact caused the formation of the new Sredniy Stog culture.

    it could be that in SS the kurgans were just a distant riverberation of EEF ideas along with the quintessential EEF practice of the crouched burial ( later seen in BBC and CWC)
    Kotova is always a good read and the impulse came from the farmer cultures, especially Tripolye-Cucuteni, after the TCC and the steppe people worked together to eliminate the earlier farmer cultures of the region. There was, actually, quite a long tradition of intensive contacts of TCC with the Western steppe and this was crucial for the development of the PIE. The change began slowly, primarily with first prestige goods, then they began to even produce and trade for TCC, to get more prestige goods, especially metal objects. At some point steppe people might even have worked as mercenaries for the TCC centres and TCC was allied with its neighbouring steppe tribes.

    That's actually a common theme, they didn't wanted to colonise the steppe and they couldn't do it, so they controlled it with the help of steppe tribes themselves, with which they alllied up and traded. Maykop did the same, but they couldn't come to terms with their steppe neighbours, so they called allies in from further East, which created this "Steppe Maykop" buffer zone.

    When the TCC became weaker in the West and Yamnaya began pushing its relatives from the steppe, this created another chain migration event. Corded Ware proper are the people which first evaded by moving up in the forest steppe, while groups like Cernavoda, Cotofeni, Usatovo etc. began moving direction West and South. At this point the TCC networks and alliances crumbled.

    The situation was almost exactly the same as with Romans : Germanics: The Romans were unable to conquer and fully defeat the Germanics, so they began to use a cheaper method of control, creating alliances with the neighbouring Germanic tribes, to keep the hostile groups at bay. But for doing so they had to transfer goods and knowledge, to a foreign people they never really fully controlled. And the whole system was still solely based on their own strength, so as long as they got the upper hand, it was cheap and ok, but as soon as they showed weakness, they were busted. Because with that kind of contacts and alliances, they made the Germanic tribes even stronger than they were before - material and idea, technology transfer.

    The Chinese did the same with their steppe people, same problem, same solution, same failure.

    Because the steppe people can survive a big defeat and just retreat into safety, where the less mobile forces of the settled communities have troubles following them. So even if being stronger in a pitched battle, the settled, less mobile people always need steppe allies. But if all these steppe allies team up, because they smell the weakness and/or a monstrous threat emerges in the East, like the Yamnaya, that's the end. And its not by chance that these events are all interconnected: Spread of Yamanaya, demise of TCC, demise of Maykop, first "Steppe Maykop" being eliminated. So Yamnaya's most important role was not that they spread themselves big time, but that they caused the chain reaction. Pretty similar to the Huns, which themselves too left little impact overall, almost disappeared in hot air, but they caused the migratory event which we call the migration period. The spread of IE and the collapse of TCC might be seen in a similar way once we get more data out of it. The main body of the PIE, even if Yamnaya was itself IE, was with the Western steppe groups, those which migrated into the forest steppe and deep into Old Europe. The Yamnaya was in their back pushing them.

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    It is possible that Ymnaya itself was formed under the influence of the steppe Maykop on the Eneolithic population of the steppe. There is still the question of where the culture of Chemurchec received his Iranian admixture. The authors attributed this to Gonur, but it may also be from early Maykop. The most supported hypothesis of the origin of the Repino culture is the area of the Manych lowland, located slightly East of the Lower don, and Repino itself is considered the initial phase of Ymnaya.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VladimirTaraskin View Post
    It is possible that Ymnaya itself was formed under the influence of the steppe Maykop on the Eneolithic population of the steppe. There is still the question of where the culture of Chemurchec received his Iranian admixture. The authors attributed this to Gonur, but it may also be from early Maykop. The most supported hypothesis of the origin of the Repino culture is the area of the Manych lowland, located slightly East of the Lower don, and Repino itself is considered the initial phase of Ymnaya.
    Maykop influenced the steppe people indeed, at least their eastern branches leading to Yamnaya, but this was no big scale demic diffussion, just some posts and elite burials it seems. If it would have been otherwise, considering its limited spread, the differences between Yamnaya and the Western groups of the steppe would have been bigger, but they weren't. This relates directly to the fact that "the steppe ancestral component" came up, most likely, fairly early on, in the Lower Don. Its interesting in this context, that Khvalynsk had a decreasing portion of it, from South West to North East of its expansion it seems, from early phase to late phase, which can be directly attributed to admixture with local forager and farmer groups. This too proves that Khvalynsk was at best a dead end assimilated, or even more likely, largely replaced with little trace left. Because they were among the few steppe derived people with more EHG-forager admixture after the initial steppe component formation. But like haplogroup Q, this admixture didn't spread successfully, but was largely eliminated on the long run, by the core groups to the South West. Yamnaya was culturally more Eastern-Maykop, the Western groups more Western-TCC influenced.

    So Maykop could have contributed, in a limited form, to the Eastern steppe groups and Yamnaya, but this was not formative for the steppe people and PIE as a whole. I'm still waiting for samples from R. yar. These might prove to be highly important and my expectation is that the earliest layers were more CHG shifted with a higher proportion of hg J, while they became later assimilated by the local hunter-fishers tribes and the dominance of hg's R1a+b. But the earliest Lower Don cultural layers and R. yar look to me like having influence from the Caucasian and most likely even Transcaucasian sphere. That was all long before Maykop though and started at a time the Black Sea level was still lower - much of the remains might be now under water, which is a big challenge for the weakly developed underwater archaeology.

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    I didn't follow entirely the topic, but how did it switched to the PIE question from the original post?

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